{ match reports }
An independent supporters' website dedicated to Mansfield Town FC
Season 12/13 Stagsnet Match Report
Blue Square Bet Premier
Mansfield Town  
4 - 1
 Stockport County
Chapman 13, 20, 77, Green 57.
 Marshall 69.
Attendance: 2628 (196 from Stockport)
Date: 9 March 2013


Martin Shaw and Simon Chamberlain at the One Call Stadium

Mansfield Town made it eleven wins from the last twelve games, and seven wins on the trot, thanks to an Adam Chapman hat-trick on his home debut, and another characteristic goal from top scorer Matt Green. As I told Chapman after the game, he was the first Stags player to score a hat-trick on his home debut since Keith Cassells in August 1985, a statistic that brought a big smile to his face. The legendary Ted Harston scored a hat-trick on his debut in 1935 though that was away from home. The run of seven wins on the trot equals the club record set in 1962 and 1991. It was a professional and effective performance from Mansfield, if not a vintage one, against a Stockport side that was as poor as their media coordinator told us they were before the game. Mansfield are now level on points with Wrexham and Kidderminster at the top, though third on goal difference. Crucially Mansfield have one game in hand on Wrexham and two in hand on Kidderminster. Newport are two points behind with one game in hand on the Stags and if Newport were to win every game, they could not be caught at the top. The Stags are at home to fifth placed Grimsby on Tuesday in a massive game, followed by further massive games against sixth placed Forest Green and leaders Wrexham.

Mansfield made two changes from the side that won at Woking as Dempster returned from injury in place of Geohaghon, and Meikle came in for the injured Briscoe.

Persistent light rain made the pitch a bit skiddy, but nowhere as bad as it might have been if the rain that was predicted on Friday had materialised.

On 7 minutes, Chapman’s long throw was headed on by Jones, and Green seemed to be pushed in the back but the referee said no foul. A minute later, Meikle’s effort from 30 yards was tipped over by keeper O’Donnell.

The Stags were ahead on 13 minutes. Stevenson won the ball in the centre circle, Meikle played it forward for Green, whose shot from inside the box was parried by the keeper into the path of Chapman, who knocked it into the empty net from close range. It was a goal similar to Meikle’s winner at Luton.

On 18 minutes, Beevers took a quick throw-in, Stevenson did well to get the ball into the middle from near the corner flag, and Green’s flick towards goal was blocked.

It was 2-0 to the Stags on 20 minutes, as Chapman fired home with the outside of his right boot from the edge of the box, tee-d up by Luke Jones.

Stockport’s first meaningful chance came on 28 minutes as substitute Marshall headed straight at Marriott. Stockport were looking ok until they got into the penalty area where they looked clueless.

A great run by Meikle on 37 minutes, to feed Stevenson whose mis-kick dribbled through to the keeper. The Stags had a great chance to increase the lead on 43 minutes as a ball into the middle found Daniel with only the keeper to beat but Daniel’s finish was poor and the keeper was able to make the save low to his left. It rather summed up a poor half from Daniel who looked out of sorts. On 45+2, Daniel did get in a good cross from the left which the keeper palmed away.

The Stags went in at the break with a comfortable two goal lead.

Half time 2-0

Stockport had a rare chance on 51 minutes as substitute Jon Macken, a good goalscorer at a higher level in his day, flicked wide of the left post after good play from Whitehead on the right wing. On 53 minutes, a Jennings corner from the right was met by the prolific Luke Jones whose header looked to be going in, but was blocked. Straight to the other end as Nolan broke forward and Beevers did well to block a cross. Then Whitehead side-footed a soft shot at Marriott.

It was 3-0 on 57 minutes. Great play from Meikle as his ball forward found Green, and Green in typical fashion, lifted the ball over the keeper into the net. Green is in such good form from these positions, that you never thought he would miss. 18 goals for the season for a player more or less at the top of his game.

Green was nearly on the mark on 63 minutes from what would have been a rare headed goal. From a Jennings free kick, Green headed towards the roof of the net, and keeper O’Donnell tipped it over.

Nick Wright replaced the ineffective Daniel on 67 minutes.

Completely out of the blue, Stockport had a goal back on 69 minutes. The Stags were caught napping as Marshall had time to fire home a brilliant shot left footed from 25 yards into the top left corner, giving Marriott no chance. It was a quite brilliant goal but Mansfield should have closed him down.

Stevenson had dropped very deep and Mansfield had given away some of the initiative.

On 75 minutes, a great ball from Murray, and Meikle had a shot blocked.

The Stags re-opened the three goal cushion on 77 minutes. More great play Meikle as he found Chapman, and Chapman fired a sublime effort into the top right corner giving the goalkeeper no chance.

Marriott did well to save a Marshall cross on 79 minutes.

A double change for the Stags on 82 minutes as Rhead replaced Green, and Sutton replaced Jennings.

A good ball from Beevers on 84 minutes and Stevenson left it for Meikle whose shot was blocked. On 87 minutes, Stevenson found Rhead who shot wide though a foul had already been given. Then on 90, Meikle teed up Rhead who should have found the net but his poor effort was saved, and his blushes were spared by an offside flag.

A good performance from the Stags against a poor Stockport side. You can only beat what’s in front of you and Mansfield’s phenomenal run continues.

Man of the match: Adam Chapman

Report by: Martin Shaw and Simon Chamberlain at the One Call Stadium

Line Up:
Marriott 7 Quiet afternoon and no chance with the goal. Good handling and no mistakes.
Beevers 7 Very solid at the back, and some good play going forward.
Dempster 7 Good game.
Jones 7 Defended well, and got forward. Unlucky with one header that was blocked. It’s almost a surprise when he doesn’t score in a game these days.
Jennings 7 Solid defending.
Meikle 8 Very good and involved in most of the goals. His best game for several months.
Murray 7 Gave the ball away a couple of times, but generally played well.
Chapman 9.5 Excellent home debut with a hat-trick. An absolutely first rate signing at this time of the season.
Daniel 5 Strangely poor after a run of good performances. His touch was terrible.
Stevenson 6 Not at his best.
Green 7.5 Yet another great finish for a goal. Unlucky with header tipped over.
Sub Line Up:
Wright (for Daniel, 67) - One good run down the right.
Rhead (for Green, 82) -
Sutton (for Jennings, 82) -
Subs not used: Geohaghon, Clements.
Opposition Line Up:
O'Donnell; Halls, Hammar (Fagbola 60), Tunnicliffe, Newton; Whitehead, Kenyon, Nolan, Mainwaring (Marshall 28); Cirak (Macken 46), Cullen. Subs not used: Ormson, Hackney.
Ross Joyce (County Durham) 6 Made some poor decisions, mostly in favour of the Stags and hence the crowd didn’t get on his back.

Season 12/13 Reports